David Smith: Combine Brexit and Labour for the scariest of nightmares


At Labour's annual conference in the northern city of Liverpool, Mr Corbyn, who in 1975 voted "No" to Britain's membership of the then European Community, said he would act on the result of a debate in Labour on a second Brexit vote.

More than a 100 Labour constituency party offices have called for an conference vote on a second referendum and MPs, MEPs, union leaders and activists are also holding a march in support of a second vote. "I hope we will agree that the best way of resolving this is a general election", he told the Sunday Mirror.

Richard Angell, director of Progress, Labour's centre-left movement, said: "Jeremy Corbyn has sent a clear and welcome message to his supporters that he would be happy for them to change Labour policy and back a People's Vote to stop a hard Brexit".

Two senior members of her political team responded to her humiliation last week in Salzburg by "wargaming" an autumn vote to win public backing for her plan, the paper said.

Many activists believe that with Mrs May's plans in disarray following the rejection of her Chequers proposals by European Union leaders in Salzburg, the time is now right for Labour to throw its weight behind a fresh ballot.

Speaking to The Observer, he said: "Jeremy and I were elected in 2015 to give the Labour Party back to its members".

A caller lost his temper with the Labour front bench for "changing their stance" on Brexit and the idea of a second referendum.

Corbyn - a veteran socialist who views the European Union with suspicion - has always been against holding a second public vote on Brexit, although his opposition appears to be softening.

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Deputy leader Tom Watson told Sky News the party would nearly certainly include a pledge to hold another Brexit vote in its manifesto if members voted in favour of the idea.

Asked if the country could soon be facing an election, Corbyn replied: "We could be, because this government doesn't seem very strong, it is looking in two directions at the same time, on one hand, a trade deal with the U.S., on the other hand, some kind of relationship with Europe".

With the United Kingdom and the European Union at an impasse in divorce talks, many Labour members think the left-of-center opposition party has the power - and a duty - to force a new referendum that could reverse Britain's decision to leave the 28-nation bloc.

He said: 'A new poll shows 86% of Labour party members want the British people to be given a final say on the UK's future relationship with Europe.

"I don't know what's going to come out of all the compositing meetings that are going on", he said.

But shadow chancellor John McDonnell warned on Saturday that a second referendum could stoke racial tensions and far-right populism.

"But I would look at what the question is on offer and I would want to know what the deal is that comes out of the negotiations, if that happens", he added. I think there's the real risk of that. "That's why I think we now need to take a stand - we the Labour Party and we the country".